At just 19 years old, Hayle Hartmann is one of the first individuals with Down syndrome to join the ranks of small business owners.
Earlier this summer, Hayle’s shop, N.C. CO, which is located inside the Battlefield Mall in Springfield, Missouri, opened its doors for the very first time. So far, the response from the local community has been extremely supportive, and Hayle’s mother Holly is very proud. When asked about the opening in a recent interview, she stated:
“If one person had been hateful, it would have broken my heart… [But] the community really got behind her.”
Unlike many adults who lack the experience to start their own small business at such a young age, Hayle has been working alongside Holly in their family store, Nixa Clothing Company, for years. As Holly watched Hayle grow and thrive at Nixa, she decided it would be a great experience for her daughter to open her own store. At N.C. CO, customers can select items from across the fashion spectrum, from brightly colored hats to sleek jeans, and Hayle is looking to expand her inventory as the business grows. Hayle says she hopes her story will inspire others with Down syndrome.